Closing the loops on resource flows - a starting point for sustainable peri-urban water and waste management

A major challenge for cities is how to manage the rapidly urbanization processes that are happening, especially in areas on the periphery of formal urban areas. There is an increasing need to improve efficiency of resource use and management of waste products. Closing the loops on resource flows within water and waste management has great potential, but knowledge on these systems is still confined to small-scale pilot and demonstration projects. The aim of this research project is to identify barriers for bringing closed-loop water and waste/wastewater management systems to scale and to recommend actions for overcoming them. The underlying assumption for this project is that increasing resource efficiency and recycling processes within peri-urban areas requires a transformation in the way users are involved, technology is developed and organizations are managed. The expected result of this project is a number of recommendations for users, planners and decision-makers for how to approach closing the loops of peri-urban resource flows. Throughout this project the research will collaborate with colleagues at three host institutions (Eawag, Swedish University of Agriculture Sciences, and Maseno University in Kenya) who will provide expert insights and guidance for framing the research results. The results of this collaboration should help lift closed-loop resource management in peri-urban areas from small-scale pilot projects to mainstream planning and management processes.

Partner organizations

  • Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (SLU) (Academic, Sweden)
  • Eawag ( Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science and Technology, Academic, Switzerland)
  • Maseno University (Academic, Kenya)
Start date 01/01/2012
End date The project is closed: 31/12/2015
​​A major challenge for cities is how to manage the rapidly urbanization processes that are happening and improve efficiency of resource use and management of waste products. Closing the loops on resource flows within water and waste management has great potential, but knowledge on these systems is still confined to small-scale pilot and demonstration projects. The aim of this research project is to identify barriers for bringing closed-loop water and waste/wastewater management systems to scale and to recommend actions for overcoming them. The underlying assumption for this project is that increasing resource efficiency and recycling processes requires a transformation in the way users are involved, technology is developed and organizations are managed. The expected result of this project is a number of recommendations for users, planners and decision-makers for how to approach closing the loops on urban resource flows. Throughout this project the research will collaborate with colleagues at three host institutions (Eawag, Swedish University of Agriculture Sciences, and Maseno University in Kenya) who will provide expert insights and guidance for framing the research results.
Project leader
​Jennifer McConville
External parts
​Eawag: Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science and Technology, Swedish University of Agriculture Sciences (SLU), and Maseno University in Kenya
Key words
​Recycling, Resources, Urban, Waste, Water

Funded by

  • Formas (Public, Sweden)
​​Recycling, Resources, Urban, Waste, Water

Page manager Published: Thu 31 May 2018.